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28
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10
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2019

Haufe Group Directors and Advisory Board Named “Entrepreneur of the Year 2019”

Freiburg, October 28, 2019 –Last Friday, the Holding Board and the Advisory Board of Haufe Group were namedEntrepreneur of the Year 2019 in the digital transformation category. Ernst& Young’s award for entrepreneurial excellence recognizes the achievementsof entrepreneurs who boost Germany’s success as a business location withvisions, ideas, and engagement.

Every year, entrepreneurs throughoutthe world vie for the award in a total of 60 countries. In Germany, the awards,now in their 23rd year, were presented at a big gala in the Mercedes-BenzMuseum Stuttgart on October 25, 2019. The Holding Directors of Haufe Group,Birte Hackenjos and Markus Reithwiesner, along with the Advisory Board membersAndrea Haufe and Martin Laqua, accepted the prize on behalf of all the creativethinkers at Haufe Group. They were honored in the digital transformationcategory for successfully and sustainably transforming the company from atraditional publisher to an international provider of software and professionaleducation solutions. In his prize-giving speech, Hartmut Jenner, CEO Kärcher,stressed Haufe Group’s entrepreneurial courage and continuous will to change.“Haufe Group from Freiburg has earned the top grade in digital transformation[…] One thing was clear to this family-owned enterprise: Only through radicalchange would the company have a future. With absolute customer focus and newideas, and with its brands Haufe, Lexware, and Haufe Akademie, Haufe Group hasdeveloped from a specialist publisher to become a leading digital mediacompany.

“The success of our digitaltransformation is based on a holistic understanding of change, which applies aboveall to our organization and culture, as well as to our products and services,”says Markus Reithwiesner. “We are delighted to receive this prestigious award,which honors all the employees at Haufe Group as active agents oftransformation.”

Haufe Group now draws on its experience from itsown metamorphosis to create solutions that will help people and organizationsnavigate their way successfully through the digital transformation. “We believeit is our responsibility to pass on our expertise, and – together with ourcustomers and partners – shape change and ensure future viability,” explainsBirte Hackenjos.

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05
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03
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2020

Haufe Group Is Again Named “Digital Transformer of the Year”

Freiburg, March 5, 2020 – The Digital Transformer of the Year award for the media industry goes to Haufe Group. The company wins the award for the second time for its pioneering role in the digital transformation, beating co-nominees Axel Springer and Ströer.

Haufe Group already won the Digital Transformer of the Year award in 2017 for its radical metamorphosis from a traditional publisher to a successful software and solution provider. Now, the initiative of the same name has again honored the corporate group for its exemplary transformation achievements. In herprize-giving speech, Insa Klasing praised how Haufe Group responds consistently to the dynamics of rapid change and shows how a lasting capacity to learn and change can bridge the gap between old and new, stability and dynamism, and the installed base and innovation business. These factors make Haufe Group “ a digital transformer through and through.” Not only does the corporate group embody inward transformation, but – with its wide range of products and services – it also empowers its customers to successfully instigate transformation processes themselves.

The digital transformation necessitates constant changes in organizations’ structural and cultural frameworks. Permanently focusing on the organization’s ability to transform and shaping the transformation hand-in-hand with the people at Haufe Group is the job of Helmut Fink-Neuböck, who was appointed Chief Organizational Innovation Officer in summer 2019 and who accepted the award on behalf of all employees. Haufe Group uses data from its own transformation experience to continuously develop and hone solutions, products, and services for its customers, and thus help people and companies navigate their journey into the digital world successfully.

Digital Transformer of the Year: the initiative and the award

The prize, which has now been awarded for the third time, recognizes companies from the automotive, machinery and plant engineering, and media industries who have excelled in the digitalization of their organization. The award was conceived by the Digital Transformer of the Year initiative founded by the management consultancy Mediate, the Steinbeis School of Management + Innovation, and the communications company Vogel Business Media. This year, Command Control, the Cybersecurity Summit at Messe München, joined the initiative as a premium partner.

The shortlist for Digital Transformer of the Year 2019 was drawn up by the initiative based on an online survey of over 1,000 managers and subject matter experts. As well as providing an indication of the mood in Germany with regard to the digital transformation, the survey participants made suggestions about which companies were digital pioneers in their industry. A seven-person jury comprising high-caliber digital and industry experts then selected the winners from this shortlist.

Photo: Paul Knecht/storytile

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04
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05
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2020

Haufe Group: New Era in the Leadership of the Family-Owned Enterprise

The shareholders and the Advisory Board of Haufe Group herald the start of a new era in the management of the family-owned enterprise. From today, Birte Hackenjos (50) and Harald Wagner (49) will together lead the corporate group. Birte Hackenjos, who has been Holding Director and COO since 2013, assumes the role of CEO. Harald Wagner, Commercial Director and a managing director at Haufe Group since 2008, is the new CFO. With these appointments, the shareholders and partners are carrying on the successful and tried-and-true dual leadership principle. In its sector, Haufe Group is considered one of the most innovative media and software companies in Germany and has grown strongly in recent years, notably with its digital offerings.

Markus Reithwiesner (57), who joined the company in 1998, was appointed Holding Director in 2005 and CEO in 2013. He leaves Haufe Group after 22 years at his own request, on the best of terms and in mutual agreement with the shareholders and Advisory Board, to pursue new challenges.

Andrea Haufe, chairperson of the Advisory Board, expressed her sincere thanks to Markus Reithwiesner for his very successful tenure at the family-owned enterprise: “Markus Reithwiesner recognized the opportunities of digitalization at the end of the 1990s – much earlier than many others – and grasped these opportunities for our company with tremendous success. With the confidence of the Advisory Board and in collaboration with the other members of the Holding Board, Markus Reithwiesner drove the strategic transformation of Haufe Group and made it a digital pioneer. We are greatly indebted to him – not least for putting us in such a strong position to face these challenging times.” The corporate group’s sales have more than quadrupled over the past 20 years. Haufe Group today has over a million customers, including all DAX 30 companies, and employs more than 2,000 people in Germany and abroad. The company has been honored for its successful transformation many times over. It was, for example, named Entrepreneur Of The Year 2019 by the multinational professional services company Ernst & Young.

Birte Hackenjos, who joined the company in 1997, was previously Holding Director and COO responsible for operational business. She was appointed to the Holding Board in 2013 and helped shape the digital transformation of the corporate group right from the start.

Harald Wagner has been Commercial Director since 2008 and managing director of various companies in Haufe Group for several years. Prior to his start at Haufe Group, Wagner was managing director of the publishing group Österreichischer Bundesverlag in Vienna, Austria.

The change at the top of the company comes after a number of discussions between the shareholders and the Advisory Board, as well as Markus Reithwiesner and Birte Hackenjos, which already began last year. Martin Laqua, member of the Advisory Board and until 2017 Holding Director, says, “The development of Haufe Group over the past years was always characterized by profound change as part of our strategic transformation into a digital champion. Nevertheless, we maintained the values of a family-owned enterprise throughout this sustained change process. This congruence of continuity and transformation is intrinsic to the identity of our company and is also important for us – the shareholders and members of the Advisory Board – in defining the future of the company.” Laqua adds: “That is why continuity and transformation shape the new era of management that we are currently ushering in. On the one hand, we are accommodating Markus Reithwiesner’s request to tread new paths after more than 20 years with the company. And on the other hand, with Birte Hackenjos and Harald Wagner, we are entrusting leadership to two eminently experienced, entrepreneurial, and future-oriented managers. In their previous capacities, they have contributed significantly to the success of Haufe Group. Furthermore, they are held in high esteem by the workforce as well as by the shareholders and the members of the Advisory Board, and are sure to continue the company’s success story in collaboration with its employees.”

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10
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08
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2020

Haufe Group: Revenue of 393 Million Euros in Fiscal Year 2019/2020

Freiburg, 08/10/2020 – Haufe Group closed the fiscal year 2019/2020 with revenue of 393 million euros. Sales in the past fiscal year thereby almost reached the level of the year before (fiscal year 2018/2019: 407 million euros; sales decline of 3 percent). Continuous growth in digital solutions largely compensated for pandemic-related lost revenue for example, in the area of classroom seminars, in 2019/2020.

Haufe Group’s fiscal year 2019/2020 (July 1, 2019 to June 30, 2020) was essentially shaped by two factors, which were both triggered by the COVID-19 pandemic. Sales developed as planned for the first eight months (July 2019 to February 2020), but then increased in the last third of the fiscal year (March to June 2020) for digital solutions, while falling, for example, for classroom seminars, all of which had to be canceled during the lockdown.

Demand for digital solutions increases among freelancers and micro-enterprises

In the segment of freelancers and micro-enterprises, the past fiscal year saw a considerable rise in demand for digital, cloud-based solutions – for example, the online accounting and payroll products from lexoffice. Lexware, too, profited from increased demand. Growth in these segments confirms Haufe Group’s strategy of supporting freelancers and micro enterprises by providing automated and connected solutions for their business processes.

Growth in digital transformation offerings for medium-sized companies and large corpora-tions; lost revenue in classroom seminars in the training business

In the customer segment of medium-sized and large corporations, Haufe Group enjoyed strong growth in digital transformation offerings, remaining on track most notably in the first two-thirds of the fiscal year. Here, too, growth drivers were cloud-based HR solutions such as Haufe Talent Management and Haufe Zeugnismanager. Year on year, the company experienced clear double-digit percentage growth in this segment. Under the Haufe brand, Haufe Group brings together solutions that support companies in their change processes through consulting, software and training. Among these solutions are the training and professional development offerings of Haufe Akademie, which comprise digital and classroom learning. During lockdown, the business with classroom training was halted completely, leading to con-siderable lost revenue in this segment. In the same period, the demand for digital learning programs rose. To cater to this, more than 120 products were created or moved to digital learning formats at short notice. As a result, it was possible to acquire around 50,000 new participants during this time alone.

“Our strategy is effective, even in challenging times”

“Haufe Group’s formula of retaining a broad base is paying off. The strategy of empowering our different customers to transform themselves with digital solutions in increasingly dynamic markets is effective, even in challenging times,” say Birte Hackenjos, CEO, and Harald Wagner, CFO Haufe Group. Against the background of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the global economy, the leadership duo sees it as a success that Haufe Group almost reached the revenue level of the previous year. They add: “We would like to thank our customers for the great trust they place in us. And we would like to thank our employees for their exceptional dedication every day, particularly over the past months.”

At the end of fiscal year 2019/2020, Haufe Group employed around 2,100 people in Germany and abroad.

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